241. Making Their Weigh in Life

When they were born 19 years ago today, my twin granddaughters did it in a big way.  They weighed in at a combined total of 15 pounds 7 ounces.  Ouchie.

Born first was Natalie Patricia Opsvig weighing in at 7 pounds 3 ounces. Joy Corinne Opsvig came next.  She weighed 8 pounds 4 ounces. It was lucky the hospital didn’t charge by the pound.

In the 19 years since, they have each gained about 92 pounds. Do the math.  That’s about 4 and three quarters pounds per year.  If they keep this up, by the time they’re going-on-80, they will each weigh 334 pounds. That’s even more than Octo-woman weighs when she’s in training for her next title bout.

Actually, as with all statistics, the numbers can be “cooked”.  The above estimate is predicated on the faulty assumption that the girls consume some kind of nourishment besides birdseed and yogurt. Such is not the case. Nobody ever got fat eating half-orders of Jamba juice and tacos. 

Natalie and Joy made their premiere appearance on May 5, 1992. They were born at Group Health Hospital in Renton, Washington. They were big, healthy, beautiful babies and the delivery went almost without a hitch.  In all the excitement, my daughter Teresa’s blood pressure suddenly spiked, but after the dust settled, it went back to normal and just had to be monitored for a couple of weeks afterward.

Teresa and Eric brought the twins home from the hospital equipped with a sort of user manual provided by the Group Health Labor and Delivery Department.  According to the post-delivery instructions contained therein, we were supposed to mark down how much milk the babies were drinking from their bottles.

Never having had any experience with twin-rearing, Teresa and I regarded any violation to the instructions in the user manual as grounds for arrest, excommunication, and/or confiscation of the babies by the nurses at Group Health.

We set up and maintained elaborate charts for each baby showing the time of day of each feeding, the ounces consumed, whether somebody pee-peed or pooped, and whether anybody tipped the wait staff.

To give you an idea of the intensity of our zeal, we agonized over devising some system whereby we would never – repeat NEVER – allow the infants to accidentally share the same bottle.  In our hysteria, we did all we could to avoid the communal sharing of dog germs, distemper, malaria, athlete’s foot, and so on, but we were never confident that we were fully successful. Boiling the nipples wasn’t enough.  We wondered about washing them in Clorax.

One day, Teresa noticed an alarming trend on the charts.  THE MILK INTAKE FOR EACH BABY HAD DECREASED BY 50 PERCENT.  They both looked good, and didn’t seem to be sick or starving, but should we call the doctor, or rush directly to the nearest Emergency Room?  What were the symptoms of rickets? 

Just before terror fully engulfed us, Teresa had a “Eureka” moment.  She ran into the kitchen and grabbed one of the containers of formula.  My son-in-law Eric had earlier brought home a new brand from Toys R Us.  According to the formula’s “user manual” which we had failed to read, we were supposed to add 50% water to it and then shake it well. 

That’s how it happened that we were giving the babies the thick high-voltage nutrition, and they were too full to drink as much as they previously did.

Maybe it explains how, to this day, the twins’ idea of a big meal is a cheese stick and three oyster crackers. 

In spite of their modest food intake, though, Natalie and Joy have always been nuclear-energized.  They excelled in school, and in high-energy soccer, track, and competitive Irish dance.  It must be something in their cornflakes.

Today, they’re both freshmen in college.  Natalie is thinking about becoming a teacher, and Joy isn’t sure yet.  They’re still “weighing” their options. Maybe one of them will become a nutrition advisor.

Have a happy 19th birthday, girls.  Thank you for brightening our world.

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One Response to 241. Making Their Weigh in Life

  1. Joy Opsvig says:

    Thanks Grandma! I loved this! The video is so funny 🙂

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